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#1957764 - 09/12/12 08:58 AM Help! Picking a first concerto!
Gould Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
So after years and years of waiting my teacher finally gave me the thumbs up to start working on a concerto! After a long discussion, he gave me the chance to pick my own concerto and to start working on it from there; he trusts that I won't choose something overly bombastic such as things like Brahms, Rach, Tchaik,etc.
After thinking about it, i've narrowed my choices to be down to the romantic era. Problem is, I CAN'T DECIDE. There are just too many beautiful gems to pick from!

It would be amazing if someone could share me an insight about this and perhaps even suggest some wonderful romantic concertos!

P.S I don't really want to choose a overplayed concerto such as the Grieg and Mendelssohn.

Thank you soo much in advance! smile

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#1957766 - 09/12/12 09:05 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4752
Loc: USA
chopin 1 if you can handle it

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#1957770 - 09/12/12 09:22 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
arpan70 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 99
Loc: Mumbai, India
The Chopin 1 isn't a great beginner concerto. It's significantly hard. All the romantic era concertos are incredibly hard if you remove the Grieg concerto from the list. Why not try one of the last 8 mozart concertos or Beethoven's 1st or 2nd concerto as your first concerto and then try a romantic concerto.
_________________________
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No.23, Op.57 "Apassionata"
Brahms: Violin Sonata No.2, Op.100
Faure: Barcarolle No.5, Op.66
Grieg: Cello Sonata, Op.36

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#1957775 - 09/12/12 09:53 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: arpan70]
Gould Offline
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Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Didin't want to choose a classical concerto because I simply have no interest in classical works, haha. Though I seriously adore and love listening to them being played; I don't really have much interest in actually learning a classical concerto. The only classical concerto's that I would have wanted to play would probably be far beyond my reach, cough Beethoven 4,5 Mozart 20, 24, etc.

p.s Yes, I do know that I sound a tad bit overambitious. :P

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#1957776 - 09/12/12 09:56 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
arpan70 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 99
Loc: Mumbai, India
In sheer technical terms, Mozart 20, 24 are easier than the Grieg Concerto.
_________________________
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No.23, Op.57 "Apassionata"
Brahms: Violin Sonata No.2, Op.100
Faure: Barcarolle No.5, Op.66
Grieg: Cello Sonata, Op.36

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#1957780 - 09/12/12 10:05 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: arpan70]
Gould Offline
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Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Perhaps in general terms, but haha, Mozart is terribly difficult in his "own" way I suppose. Clarity, clarity, clarity! Ahhh. What a pain it is.

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#1957781 - 09/12/12 10:05 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4752
Loc: USA
Arpan is right, that's why I said "if you can handle it" lol. I actually love Mozart's 23rd concerto. So pretty. Try that one.

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#1957785 - 09/12/12 10:10 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: JoelW]
Gould Offline
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Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
I do love the 23th concerto! Especially the heartbreaking second movement! But as I originally stated. I have no interest in learning a classical concerto! smile

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#1957787 - 09/12/12 10:17 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4752
Loc: USA
What do you have in mind?

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#1957792 - 09/12/12 10:32 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: JoelW]
Gould Offline
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Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Some of the MANY wandering concertos floating in my fickle minded mind are smile
G.Pierne's Concerto. It's truly an amazing concerto and definitely deserves a lot more public eye!

Scriabin's Concerto, same thing applies like the Pierne. Wonder why no one plays this work often...

Teacher suggested either Liszt 1,2 or the Yellow River concerto (not romantic but still.)

As of now I am in a dilema! Soo many to choose from!

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#1957800 - 09/12/12 11:00 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
JoelW Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4752
Loc: USA
What's your current playing level?

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#1957811 - 09/12/12 11:21 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: JoelW]
Gould Offline
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Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Hey there. Not really sure how I can properly answer that question. I guess I should generally be fairly average I hope!

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#1957824 - 09/12/12 11:44 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5415
Loc: Orange County, CA
Try Shostakovich No. 2. No. 1 isn't too difficult, either, compared to Prokofiev, etc.

Gershwin's Concerto in F has some scintillating moments.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#1957836 - 09/12/12 12:07 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5279
Loc: Philadelphia
Originally Posted By: Gould
The only classical concerto's that I would have wanted to play would probably be far beyond my reach, cough Beethoven 4,5 Mozart 20, 24, etc.

p.s Yes, I do know that I sound a tad bit overambitious. :P

And yet you say your teacher recommends Liszt? Not sure I'm following the thought process here... also, why not play Tchaikovsky or Rachmaninoff if you're at that level?
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1957837 - 09/12/12 12:08 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
BDB Online   content
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Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21254
Loc: Oakland
Why a concerto? Do you want to play something for 2 pianos, or do you want to play with an ensemble. If the former, why not play something for 2 pianos? If the latter, why not play some chamber music?
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1957840 - 09/12/12 12:15 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Derulux]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5415
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: Derulux
And yet you say your teacher recommends Liszt? Not sure I'm following the thought process here... also, why not play Tchaikovsky or Rachmaninoff if you're at that level?

Well, my piano teacher gave me Rach2 right after I finished the Beethoven Pathetique. I didn't even want to play Rach2. My playing level was far below the music's demands.

Some teachers are trying to live vicariously through their students, you know?
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#1957854 - 09/12/12 12:44 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
arpan70 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 99
Loc: Mumbai, India
Yes, the Scriabin Concerto is gorgeous. I find the orchestration far superior to that of the Chopin concertos. However, the Scriabin concerto is incredibly difficult, especially if you are going to play it with a second pianist, because of the abundance of poly-rhythms. If you can play the Liszt concerto, why not do the second one. I find the first a bit dry. And to bring up a current topic in this forum, "why no love for Mozart and Beethoven?" .

Furthermore, I'd highly recommend you play some chamber music before trying a concerto. Try finding a good violinist and do a Beethoven violin sonata. If you are felling a bit more romantic you can also try the Grieg sonatas or the Brahms sonatas. This will develop your communication skills immensely.
_________________________
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No.23, Op.57 "Apassionata"
Brahms: Violin Sonata No.2, Op.100
Faure: Barcarolle No.5, Op.66
Grieg: Cello Sonata, Op.36

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#1957862 - 09/12/12 01:01 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 777
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Gould

P.S I don't really want to choose a overplayed concerto such as the Grieg and Mendelssohn.

How about Mendelssohn's 2nd piano concerto? I much prefer it to the first. Rarely played, lots of romanticism, and a beautiful 2nd movement.

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#1957871 - 09/12/12 01:29 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
BruceD Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 17827
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: Gould
Hey there. Not really sure how I can properly answer that question. I guess I should generally be fairly average I hope!


A list of your current repertoire would be much more helpful than "fairly average I hope."

I am not sure, however, that I fully understand the question. When you say that there are too many beautiful ones from which to choose, it sounds as if you are familiar with most of the Romantic concerto repertoire. If that is so, then what sort of suggestions can we make? Anything not main stream may be hard to find, but, ultimately, we can't choose for you, that's something you and your teacher ultimately have to do.

I would rely on my teacher - who knows my skills, my musical and artistic needs as well as my likes and dislikes - to help me decide which concerto to choose.
_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#1957981 - 09/12/12 05:53 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: AZNpiano]
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5279
Loc: Philadelphia
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: Derulux
And yet you say your teacher recommends Liszt? Not sure I'm following the thought process here... also, why not play Tchaikovsky or Rachmaninoff if you're at that level?

Well, my piano teacher gave me Rach2 right after I finished the Beethoven Pathetique. I didn't even want to play Rach2. My playing level was far below the music's demands.

Some teachers are trying to live vicariously through their students, you know?

Yep, I can follow you there. I guess I'm trying to figure out this person's actual ability level (as separate from "fairly okay I guess"). Several contradicting statements do not lend to a straightforward and simple reply unless we clarify them. wink
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1958003 - 09/12/12 06:47 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: BruceD]
Gould Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Not really expecting to get a final choice from the forums but rather was hoping to find suggestions and help towards choosing the concerto. Some works that i've recently finished over the past months Schubert A minor Sonata (d784), Liszt's 2 legendes, Mendelssohn's Rondo Cap., Bach P&F WTC 2: B minor

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#1958021 - 09/12/12 07:03 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
Orange Soda King Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/09
Posts: 6070
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
I'd go with a Mozart concerto. And wait a week or so before starting the Mozart concerto, so you can listen to this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlhbFk2GbcY

this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrNbmFM6O60

and this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fj1i_fL5QCw

all over and over again to help understand the heart of Mozart. The center of Mozart was opera, and its influence is VERY in his pieces.

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#1958077 - 09/12/12 10:34 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: arpan70]
ScriabinAddict Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/10/12
Posts: 333
Originally Posted By: arpan70
However, the Scriabin concerto is incredibly difficult, especially if you are going to play it with a second pianist, because of the abundance of poly-rhythms.


Not only that, the whole piece is awkward beyond belief. However difficult the Scriabin concerto may sound, it's about 10x more so.

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#1958082 - 09/12/12 10:47 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
ScriabinAddict Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/10/12
Posts: 333
In addition to the Mozart, there are a couple Bach concerti that rarely see the light of day. If you're looking for something obscure, I'm sure Thalbergmad (I believe he visits these forums) has a long list of easier Romantic and Classical concerti that could be worth taking a look at.

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#1958093 - 09/12/12 11:19 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Romantic - Bombastic - Overplayed = Nothing Left.

Maybe the Strauss Burlesque?
Franck Symphonic Variations?
MacDowell #2? (too bombastic?)

Why not Ravel? Why not Beethoven 3?

If this isn't for a potential competition or orchestral performance, then chamber music also a good idea - if you have string players at your disposal, maybe Mozart g minor quartet, one of the Op. 1 Beethoven trios or a Mendelssohn trio?
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1958097 - 09/12/12 11:38 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Kreisler]
Gould Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Romantic - Bombastic - Overplayed = Nothing Left.

Maybe the Strauss Burlesque?
Franck Symphonic Variations?
MacDowell #2? (too bombastic?)

Why not Ravel? Why not Beethoven 3?

If this isn't for a potential competition or orchestral performance, then chamber music also a good idea - if you have string players at your disposal, maybe Mozart g minor quartet, one of the Op. 1 Beethoven trios or a Mendelssohn trio?


It isin't for a competition but it is for a performance with my teachers orchestra for next year. Though chamber music is wonderful I would rather prefer to learn a concerto for now. I didin't want to choose the Ravel or Beethoven because I am positive that it would be negatively received by the unfortunately less musically inclined audiences around my area. In other words i'm searching for a concerto that can be universally loved by the masses; i.e trying to promote classical music towards audiences that don't usually think highly of it.

Your suggestions were amazing! Listening to them at the moment. smile


Edited by Gould (09/12/12 11:40 PM)

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#1958098 - 09/12/12 11:42 PM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Kreisler]
Gould Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
Originally Posted By: Kreisler

(too bombastic?)


Sorry, I said that wrongly. When I said bombastic I was referring to ridiculously difficult concertos in technical terms, stamina, etc. Such as Brahms 2, Tchaik 1, etc.

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#1958108 - 09/13/12 12:36 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13759
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I think a "less musically inclined" audience would love something like Ravel, Shostakovich 2, or even Kabalevsky 3. The latter two especially are underplayed, and all three are a bit jazzy.

Kabalevsky 3 gets a bad rap for its subtitle ("Youth"), but it's completely delightful. Besides, if it's good enough for Gilels, it's good enough for ANYBODY:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ILILmNuPZI
(an old recording, out of tune, but it's Gilels, so it's still awesome)


Originally Posted By: Gould
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Romantic - Bombastic - Overplayed = Nothing Left.

Maybe the Strauss Burlesque?
Franck Symphonic Variations?
MacDowell #2? (too bombastic?)

Why not Ravel? Why not Beethoven 3?

If this isn't for a potential competition or orchestral performance, then chamber music also a good idea - if you have string players at your disposal, maybe Mozart g minor quartet, one of the Op. 1 Beethoven trios or a Mendelssohn trio?


It isin't for a competition but it is for a performance with my teachers orchestra for next year. Though chamber music is wonderful I would rather prefer to learn a concerto for now. I didin't want to choose the Ravel or Beethoven because I am positive that it would be negatively received by the unfortunately less musically inclined audiences around my area. In other words i'm searching for a concerto that can be universally loved by the masses; i.e trying to promote classical music towards audiences that don't usually think highly of it.

Your suggestions were amazing! Listening to them at the moment. smile
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1958111 - 09/13/12 12:50 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Gould]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21254
Loc: Oakland
Or consider a concerto that can be played as a chamber work. That was an option for the concertos that were published during Mozart's lifetime, K.413-449, all of which are pretty interesting works.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1958113 - 09/13/12 12:51 AM Re: Help! Picking a first concerto! [Re: Kreisler]
Gould Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/04/10
Posts: 429
Loc: Earth
The Kabalevsky 3 had always been on my mind but... (don't kill me) it feels a little condescending and unimpressive to have that concerto in my rep., partially due to the infamy it received as being a "Youth"/Beginner concerto.

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